King Abdullah University for Science and Technology


Kingdom of Saudi Arabia


Size: 8,000,000 SF

Architect: HOK

Feature: LEED Platinum

King Abdullah University for Science and Technology

Saudi Arabia

KAUST is an international, merit-based, graduate-level research university dedicated to inspiring a new age of scientific achievement and addressing humanity’s most urgent concerns pertaining to energy and environmental sustainability. 

The huge campus was built on an incredible pace, opening just 29 months after design began. As structural design engineer, Walter P Moore’s team of over 50 structural engineers in seven cities all worked as a single coordinated team to design structures for the academic complex, including the Library, Engineering & Science, Business Data Center, University Center, and the Auditorium. We developed highly efficient long-span structural systems for the elegant roofs connecting several of the buildings, and an innovative pipe structure for the 50m tall rotunda known as The Lantern. Our design of a concrete diagrid structure for solar chimneys provided requisite thermal mass while simplifying the overall construction.   

The campus is Saudi Arabia’s first LEED certified project and was the world’s largest LEED Platinum project at the time of certification.